Creative Writing, Momentary

Too Busy

I watch the busy people rushing through life.

They don’t have a moment to stop and notice that they are being watched,

Nor do they have the moment to notice that their daughters are becoming wrecked emotionally,

That their sons are on the edge, that their babies are not progressing,

Nor do they notice their dying mother and father or their forgetting grandparents.

They don’t have the moment to notice.

I take a step out from behind the coffee shop window,

I am on the corner of Baldwin Street, in the city of Bristol,

The sun is high in the sky and there are no clouds,

I suck in a gush of air through my nose

While I close my eyes

I blow out a flood of breath.

I am a busy person too,

I am busy relaxing and enjoying my existence,

Eating and drinking, loving and living,

I am two decades old but I have understood already.

I will not partake on the journey where I will be dying to live

When that life means really living to die

I approach a woman who has taken a break from the buzz,

She’s bent over by the bus stop, pulling at her heel.

I start, ‘Excuse me, Mam’

‘No, Sorry, I’m busy’ she says as she tries to run off.

Her heel gives way and I approach again.

‘I can see that and that is why I am here’

‘No, no I can’t talk to you now’. She throws her shoes off

And barefooted she re-joins the rush through life.

She hadn’t noticed that she had dropped her wallet and key

My returning it was unsuccessful because she was too busy.

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Creative Writing

Brenda,

There’s something I have been wanting to say to you but I just haven’t known how to say it.

I’ve known you for what, nine years –  and we have been married for eight of those years. I know you now, too well perhaps and that can never be a good thing.

In the early years of knowing you, my whole life changed. You took me away from the books and the desk and you brought me to the mountains and the oceans and you sat me under the stars and above the clouds. We flew, we ran. I was living life so close to the edge and it was like I could fall off at any point, but because I didn’t know if I would and when I would I wasn’t scared at all. I was drunk always, intoxicated by love and adventure. You made me love adventure and so I chose to embark upon a new adventure, with you as my wife. We wed, and we fought; our two souls, our spirits and our bodies became one, just as God had intended. It was great and it was terrible.

When we couldn’t have children I was really pleased, which sounds weird, but I just thought if we are not meant to have children now then so be it, one day we will – let’s travel. Then you took a dive, from the highest board in our matrimonial pool into the depths of your work. You swam in the swamp of career. I dived too, just about. I dived to find you in it all, but the mess of it blinded me. When I did see you, I could see all this was making you ill. But for some reason you were determined to complete your swim, and so you swam. Why?

Ha. Then you lost your job, I thought I would have my girl back now. Do you remember I had started writing and it was taking off for me? But that wasn’t enough for me. I needed my girl back. I stopped writing so much, so I could be with you. I would take you back packing, sailing, hiking anywhere in the world, to share with you its beauty that we had missed for so long. But you always turned away. Sweet bitterness. You gave me a taste of life on the edge and you ripped it out of my midst when we said “I do”.

I do love you and I do want to try, but I do want to travel and I do not want to live like this any more. I do, Brenda, I do, I do.

What I am trying to say is, that I would like for us to go away and try each other one last time. Anywhere you want, everywhere you want. We could try and make it work if you say yes. But if you say no, then I’ll know we made a mistake. After all marriage will not last on love alone.

As your husband, I would like to tell you “I STILL DO”. But I have to ask “do you still too?”

I Love You Brenda

P.S. – Please say yes.

P.P.S – Re-read our vows. I’ve left them on the living room table in the red envelope entitled ‘wedding vows, 1982’.

I Still Do

Aside
Creative Writing

Scarlett Crimson

We were young and dumb. Yes, sounds a bit cliché but we were immature. I’m not trying to hint that being mature means you don’t make mistakes, but it is the best excuse for what we did.

Yes, I love you and yes we had fun. When we were married I couldn’t see anyone else. We often spoke about that being a good thing, possibly the sweetest thing ever but I have realised now it is that reason why I can no longer be around for you. I couldn’t see any other woman before, so I didn’t have the chance to strengthen my fidelity, I had no interests because I saw nothing to be interested in. It’s been four years and I’ve felt that way up until you had that accident. You have been in this coma for three weeks, and they don’t know if you’re going to make it. Since I’ve accepted that it’s like scales have been lifted from my eyes.

I see everything now, I see the beauty of the world, I see women and men but not in the same light anymore. I see couples doing things together and enjoying one another’s company. Then I go home to an empty house, and sit in the dark with a bottle of wine and three pictures of you. I flick through them over and over and over, as though I was going through a whole album.

It is the one I took, when you first got off the plane to come and see me for the summer, with your scarf wrapped around your head and clipped under your chin, your lips as red as blood, your shades as black as night and as round as a full moon. You are not smiling in the picture but I remember how you couldn’t stop grinning as you realised who was behind the camera.

The other one is when you were sat at the morgue, when we went to bury our three week old baby girl. The picture looks almost black and white, but that’s odd because it was taken in colour. The last one was taken on the final night of our wedding, when our families were leaving, yours to Ohio and mine to London. Oh dear, how you cried about their departure. You fought with me that night, actually you fought with me most of that week. I didn’t make them go, nor did I make you marry me. You decided it all and that’s what happened.

I don’t know why it had to be those three pictures, every single night. Tonight though, I thought it important that you know. I met someone. I only met her yesterday, but she’s still here. She sat with me last night, while I flicked through your pictures and finished my bottle of wine; she had her own.

We quit our jobs in the morning, and hired a pair of Barclays bikes and cycled around the Hyde Park. Then we went back to the costume shop and played dress up games. Then ran all the way back to the park and we watched the sun set. Today I got to be young and dumb. I declared you dead and remarried, sort of. She’s my wife; she’s called Scarlett Crimson now. I am going to bring her in to see you soon. She’s going to love you.

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